James Cameron to Produce 'Avatar' Trilogy
According to Deadline, the director has just inked a deal with Twentieth Century Fox to produce two brand new 'Avatar' films over the next five years. Cameron says the second and third installments will be "self-contained stories that also fulfill a greater story arc," and that they'll be jam-packed with the same "visual and emotional horsepower" that drove the original. The undisputed box office king will begin writing the scripts for both films early next year, in the hopes of beginning production of the first sequel in late 2011. He still hasn't decided whether he'll shoot them back-to-back, but Fox is aiming for a December 2014 release for the first sequel, and a December 2015 release for the 'threequel.'
Because his new 'Avatar' duties will lock him up through 2015, however, Cameron will have to abandon Sony Pictures' 'Cleopatra' film, which was to star Angelina Jolie. The project was reportedly high on Cameron's wish list, but when Fox donated a "huge" sum of money to his environmental organization, the director decided to reward the studio with 'Avatar 2' and '3' -- and, presumably, the billion-dollar revenue that they'll generate.